Sonntag, 3. Juni 2012

My very First Project

Finally I'm finding the time to start serious writing on my new blog. Freestyle Quilting is kind of a working titel, but will probably stay like that... 

I am the mother of two girls (11mths and 3 yrs) so you can imagine how hard it is to find the time to work on my projects and also to keep this blog up to date. We live in a suburb of Munich, Germany, but still I decided to write this blog in English to reach more people and also keep my English Speaking friends up to date. So please forgive me if my grammar, spelling and vocabulary is a bit weird sometimes. 

In this post I would like to tell you why I started patchworking and will tell you my first experiences with the sewing machine:

After spending a three week vacation in the United States, I got fascinated on the subject "quilting". In fabric stores and at magazine stands it seemed to me there is talk about quilting everywhere. So when I came back I started watching youtube tutorials and bought myself a book about quilting and found myself really drawn into the subject. Actually I got really excited about this and decided I wanted to try this. 

I have had my moms Sewing Machine for years now, after she had died, but had never used it. At Art School I had a sewing class almost 20 years ago, but I never really liked it. So my first struggle was to get to know the machine and find out how to adjust the yarn... tough one. For hours I didn't get the bottom thread to come up with the needle... haha. But in the end I managed it!

In Germany you hardly find Quilting Stores like in the US and UK! It took some reasearch and I found this really cute Shop Downtown Munich (actually just around the corner where I used to live, but never recognized it, since I just never was interested in fabric and Texitle-Arts). The shop is called "Quilt et Textilkunst" (Quilt and Textile Arts, and has a Gallery with Quilt-Exhibitions and offers workshops. Unfortunately I missed the "Beginners" Class, but will try to get in in September. 

When searching the Net for Tutorials I found the one on "Jelly Roll Race". Which really amazed me and I thought it would be a great jump-start project. You can buy moda-Jelly Rolls on German Webstores, but they were a bit too expensive so I almost gave up. But then I stepped into the Shop (Quilt et Textilkunst) and found, they made their own jelly rolls of left over fabrics in matching colours and styles! So I bought two of them as you can see on the picture.

So I started my very first jelly roll race, without thinking about anything, just sew sew sew, as shown in the tutorial:.

I was soooo excited, and had a lot of fun doing it. Of course my bottom thread ran out like two times, but that was good for me practicing to change it. And pull the thread up with the needle hehe.

At the end, of course the sewing wasn't perfect but the piece of fabric that came out of that little jelly roll was just so pretty:

The only thing I was a bit disappointed about was, that the piece turned out very long and thight, which you can't see on the picture. The reason is simple. That jelly roll from the shop only had 22 strips, while the moda jelly roll, as shown in the tutorial has 42! So I set the piece aside, for I hadn't decided what to do with it, to start another jelly roll project.

I have to admit, that I'm not a big "thinker" when it comes to planning things. I am the kind of artist that just takes the brush and adds colour without knowing what will come out. That's maybe why I like to call this "freestyle quilting".

So for the second Jelly Roll, I took another tutorial and sew sets of 4 strips together, this time I was not taking the strips as they come off the roll, but tried to match them together. After that I cut them in blocks and laied two different blocks right sides together, but one vertical and one horizontal and sewed all around. After pressing I cut them in a 45° Angle into four pieces and pressed them again. This is what came out:

Isn't that totally awesome?? And it was all done so quickly! I'm getting so excited about that! That's why I started this blog! I just have to share my excitement. Of course I sewed one block together wrong, but I'll just have to see what I'll do once I get futher with this project.

The last few weeks I have bought some fabric to have a little stock of material, washed and pressed it and I'll see what turns out of these two jelly roll projects. I'll keep you posted on that!

Last week I bought this little ironing Board at Ikea so I can press my pieces on my desk now. Isn't that cute? It was only a couple of Euros!! 
So this is how my little sewing station looks like now!

Yesterday I have finally ordered an open foot for freehand quiting and a large piece of batting. I still haven't decided which of the two projects to finish first so it will take a while till I can get started on the quilting. But I am already very excited about it!

Okay, that's it for today! I'm gonna go and get some rest and I'll keep you posted on my projects!
Happy Crafting!

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